28 Jun CHC Obtains Name of Nominator for a BLM Parcel Near Delta
June 28, 2013 –
Citizens for a Healthy Community has learned that Aspen Operating, LLC is the responsible party that nominated a 2,568 acre parcel of BLM lands near Delta for oil and gas leasing. Click here to read the expression of interest (EOI).
The parcel was previously slated to be sold at the August 2013 BLM oil and gas lease sale, but since has been deferred.
The BLM provided the information after CHC filed a Freedom of Information Act request through our strategic partners at the Western Environmental Law Center.
The news follows the letter that CHC and a coalition of regional and national conservation groups sent last month to the BLM urging them to follow the law and change their secretive policy of keeping lease nominators confidential. We asked the BLM to bring their policy in line with a Court’s ruling after we won our lawsuit that challenged the legality of keeping lease nominators’ identifying information from the public.
The Judge ruled that withholding this information from the public was not allowed under the Freedom of Information Act.
While we appreciate the BLM releasing this information to us regarding the parcel near Delta, other communities from the Front Range to Durango, have requested EOIs and to-date have been denied that information from the BLM.
The agency’s denial of this information is in direct violation of the Judge’s order which stated “the information required to be provided by an EOI submitter is not protected by exemption 4 [of the Freedom of Information Act]…”
CHC will continue to push for government transparency surrounding oil and gas development on public lands.